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Fed Up With Beating By Parents & Teachers, Kids Try To Cross LoC

In an eye-opener of sorts, Jammu and Kashmir Police have caught six boys aged 12 to 13 as they were planning to cross the line of control (LoC) for arms training in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK),
PTI May 05, 2010 12:16 IST
PTI
In an eye-opener of sorts, Jammu and Kashmir Police have caught six boys aged 12 to 13 as they were planning to cross the line of control (LoC) for arms training in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK), reports DNA.

Investigations later revealed two more students were part of the plan, but opted out at the last minute.

The reason they wanted to cross over was frequent beating by teachers and parents.

"Our schoolteachers would beat us up and so would our parents. That's why we decided to cross the border," Shareeq Ahmad Mir, a VII standard student in Pattan, said.

Police said the children had left homes in Palhallan, Pattan, on Sunday telling parents that they were going to a local ground to play cricket. But they boarded a bus to Sopore and later took another bus to Kupwara.

"They went to a mosque in Regipora where an imam handed them over to Kupwara Police," Baramulla SSP Shakeel Beig said. Police said the students of New Islamia Model School, Palhallan, had made some money by winning a cricket match, which they used for travel.

"The group decided to cross the border to procure arms, skip school and avoid the vagaries of life," Beig said.

Umar Sultan, 12, who can barely construct a sentence in his mother tongue, said they were fed up with the frequent reprimands by parents and teachers and wanted to cross over.

"We decided to cross LoC, though we did not know how to do it. We went for prayers in the local mosque where imam sahib enquired about us. We had also exhausted our money," he said. The students were reunited with their parents in Baramulla on Tuesday.

"They had left to play cricket in the morning. But later DSP told us they had been taken into custody in Kupwara. I can't believe they were going across LoC," Abdul Ahad Sheikh, father of one of the kids, said.

AQ Manhas, DIG, north Kashmir range, said they were checking whether the children were brainwashed by any militant outfit.

"So far, we have found none. But there might be somebody (who indoctrinated the kids). We are investigating," he said.

Manhas advised parents to take care of their wards, so that they do not fall into wrong hands.

"Over the last two decades peace has been eluding us. This has resulted in a violent upbringing for the new generation which has become emotionally weak. They (kids) can be swayed by anyone. We have to be vigilant," he said.